By the action of dehydrating agents they are converted into aldehydes or ketones.
The aldoximes are converted by the action of dehydrating agents into nitriles: RCH: NOH-->R C: N+H 2 0.
This water cannot be entirely removed by fractional distillation, and to prepare anhydrous or "absolute" alcohol the commercial product must be allowed to stand over some dehydrating agent, such as caustic lime, baryta, anhydrous copper sulphate, &c., and then distilled.
The olefines may be synthetically prepared by eliminating water from the alcohols of the general formula CnH2n+1 OH, using sulphuric acid or zinc chloride generally as the dehydrating agent, although phosphorus pentoxide, syrupy phosphoric acid and anhydrous oxalic acid may frequently be substituted.
Fittig and his pupils (Annalen, 1883, 216, pp. loo, 115; 1885, 227, pp. 55, 119), in which it was shown that the aldehyde forms an addition compound with the sodium salt of the fatty acid, and that the acetic anhydride plays the part of a dehydrating agent.